The mood may well be lifted at Goodison Park following Everton’s 1-0 win over Huddersfield Town last time out, but Marco Silva’s side still have a long way to go to get back to their best.
If they’re to force their way into the mix for Europa League qualification contention this season then the Toffees’ form must improve drastically, and they must be smarter in their tactical approach to certain opponents, starting with Saturday’s clash with newly-promoted Wolves.
Wolves have been excellent since their promotion to the Premier League, with Nuno Espirito Santo’s side picking up plenty of points whilst also playing some expansive and scintillating football along the way.
Everton will have to be at their best to take all three points against Wolves, and Silva must recognise the need to set his side up in such a way that counters their strengths.
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Wolves are very strong in the wide areas. The likes of Diogo Jota, Jonny Castro, Helder Costa and Adama Traore represent a real threat from the flanks. What’s more, Wolves’ central midfielders, including Joao Moutinho and Ruben Neves, have the ability and vision to pick out their side’s marauding wingers with consistent accuracy.
Therefore, Silva must curb his own side’s attacking instincts on the wings to an extent and instruct them to play a more reserved game out wide. The likes Ademola Lookman and Dominic Calvert-Lewin can be trusted to track back and help their full-backs, so they ought to be in the starting XI.
If Silva opts to ignore this threat, and focus on his own attack alone, then he runs the risk of seeing his side repeatedly cut into from the wings by Wolves’ wide men.